"I will alight there", said the Sun God, pointing one of its psychedelic wings toward the fledgling campus on the mesa. Well, not quite, but French-born sculptor Nike de Saint Phalle (1930-2002) did select the roosting spot for her 14-foot-high, fiberglass statue while flying over UCSD in a helicopter. "I was scared to death", she admitted after the flight. Constructed in France, the Sun God was shipped to UCSD for installation in 1983. Every year since, it has been the star of its very own festival.

Henry Chu, '83, an Associated Students officer came up with the idea of a big bash after visiting UCLA's spring festival. But that first effort was unreasonably washed out by rain. The sun did shine on the 1984 re-debut and the festival has since become a UCSD tradition.

The venue has moved a number of times, from the original Student Center hump to the Sun God Lawn (before the Faculty Club was built) to Mile High Field where RIMAC is now, to the Price Center plaza, to Warren Mall. Now it spreads its wings from Sun God Lawn across Library Walk, Price Center and RIMAC, and draws upwards of 15,000 celebrating students and guests to its day an nighttime festivities.

In 1985, an evening concert featuring Los Lobos was added and since then such artists as The Call, My Chemical Romance, No Doubt, Social Distortion, Blues Traveler, They Might Be Giants, Switchfoot, and Ludacris have played. Ten years ago, the Battle of the Bands contest was added to grant a lucky local band a spot in the Sun God nighttime lineup.

This year marks the 25th year of the Sun God Festival.

from the 25th Sun God Festival flier

Add a New Comment
or Sign in as Wikidot user
(will not be published)
- +
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License